Streak Over; Rampage Beat Admirals 3-1

(Photo Credit: San Antonio Rampage)

The Milwaukee Admirals lost 3-1 on the road against the San Antonio Rampage at the AT&T Center on Sunday afternoon.

There is a lot that comes to an end with this game. The Admirals four-game winning streak is snapped and done so at the hands of the Rampage who they had defeated nine-games consecutively. It is the first time since the start of the 2012-13 season that the Rampage have defeated the Admirals in regulation.

Much like the game on Friday night the first period would open up with a fight involving Mason Geertsen. Alex Carrier was attempting to enter the attacking zone down the right wing when he was clipped awkwardly by the Rampage defenseman. Jimmy Oligny took exception to the collision and had a quick grappling match with Geertsen. The fighting major for Oligny was his fifth of the season.

The game’s opening goal would come less than two minutes following the fight. Andrei Mironov took a shot from the right point that Klim Kostin deflected from the slot. The puck would dip past Juuse Saros and count as Kostin’s third goal of the season.

Before the first period could come to a close Oligny would be called for a high stick that set the stage for a late power-play goal for the Rampage. Traffic clogged up the net front area and slot which gave Chris Butler a massive screen to put a one-timer down low along the ice. Saros had little chance to see the shot and Butler’s sixth goal of the season gave the Rampage a 2-0 first period lead.

In the second period another dash of déjà vu struck. Friday night the Rampage looked to have scored a goal only to see it disallowed and then go on the penalty kill which the Admirals would cash in from. That happened once again today and once again in the second period.

Kostin looked to have scored a power-play goal for the Rampage after swooping past Carrier down the left wing and snapping a shot over Saros’ right shoulder. The horn sounded. The building celebrated. Yet, the officials gathered and ruled that Brendan Ranford was responsible for a high stick against Jack Dougherty. The goal was waved off. Ranford headed to the penalty box. And the Admirals would score on the power-play courtesy of Bobby Butler moments later. The soon-to-be Olympian wired a wrist shot from the left wing circle around the screen of Harry Zolnierczyk and past the glove of Ville Husso. The tally for Butler was his seventeenth goal of the season and cut the Rampage lead down to 2-1.

With 1:44 remaining in regulation the Admirals earned an attacking zone face-off and decided to use their timeout. Saros would remain on the bench to get the extra attacker involved. Sadly, that would only see Dominic Toninato score into the empty net to make it a 3-1 Rampage lead on his seventh goal of the season. The game would conclude at that score.

This puts an end to the Admirals winning streak against the Rampage which spanned nine straight games. That was the longest winning streak against a singular opponent in the AHL history of the Admirals. The last loss against the Rampage was on 3/25/15 in a 4-3 shootout loss in Milwaukee. The Admirals last defeat in San Antonio was on 3/11/15 which was a 3-2 overtime loss. And the Admirals last regulation loss against the Rampage came all the way back on 10/20/12 when they were shutout 1-0 in San Antonio.

That of course also means seeing the first loss for Saros in his AHL career against the Rampage. He is now 8-1-0-0 in nine starts against the Rampage. He stopped 35/37 in net today. It is expected that Saros is recalled ahead of the Nashville Predators return to action on Tuesday night at the Bridgestone Arena against the Vegas Golden Knights.

The Admirals will finish their three-game road trip on Wednesday night when they face the Grand Rapids Griffins at the Van Andel Arena. Those two will then meet up at the UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena on Friday night.

Ramblings: Since the Milwaukee Admirals played on Friday night there were no roster moves made within the organization. Today’s line combinations and defensive pairings were: Zolnierczyk-Smith-Butler, Richard-Zengerle-Gaudreau, Kirkland-Pettersson-Mingoia, Labrie-Army-Moy, Oligny-Carrier, Murphy-Dougherty, Lyytinen-Granberg. Today’s scratches were: Fred Allard (healthy), Cody Bass (upper-body), Tyler Kelleher (lower-body), Andrew O’Brien (healthy), and Yakov Trenin (surgery).

What is your reaction to today’s game? Was this just a fatigued performance on the part of the Milwaukee Admirals? How do you evaluate the Admirals two-games played in San Antonio? How good was Juuse Saros in these three-games he played during the Nashville Predators bye week?

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